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Tag Archives: Kinect

Magic Mirror Changes The Color Of The Clothing You’re Trying On The Spot

On October 5 of this year, Uniqlo opened its fifth retail location in the United States, and its first on the West Coast. They set up shop at Union Square in San Francisco and amid the fanfare of a new store opening was the news of an interesting piece of technology. The store is using something they call the Magic Mirror, and it helps shoppers decide which item to buy by making it unnecessary to try the various colours available. Instead, you just put one of the items on and walk in front of the special mirror; a touchscreen then prompts you to select other hues and projects your modified reflection back to you. Developed by “the worlds leading printing company Dai Nippon Printing (DNP), this ‘virtual dressing room’” uses the Kinect’s color-changing engine and a half-mirror touch panel to achieve its magic.

And… that’s it. If you’re in the Bay Area, you might want to stroll on in just to check that out.

[ Press Release ] VIA [Damn Geeky ]

High Tech Shopping Glove Could Help You Find Things Faster At The Supermarket

Ever been in a supermarket aisle, looking up and down the displays for that one can of tomato soup you want with a google shopping list in hand, but finding nothing but rows upon rows of pickled mushrooms? In a cluttered scene, it can be hard to find the one item you’re looking for, so researchers at the Helsinki and Max Plank Institute for Informatics have developed a prototype glove that can help you find a specific object in such a 3D environment. The glove works on a hot/cold principle, and vibrates with varying degrees of intensity as your hand approaches the item you need. Using these cues, test subjects were able to locate items up to three times faster than without the gloves.

The solution builds on inexpensive off-the-shelf components such as four vibrotactile actuators on a simple glove and a Microsoft Kinect sensor for tracking the user’s hand. The researchers published a dynamic guidance algorithm that calculates effective actuation patterns based on distance and direction to the target.

This would work well in places like a supermarket, or even a library, where it’s common to spend too much time locating things. There is no talk of commercialization at the moment, but it’s often in research settings like these that some of the most exciting consumer technologies are born.

[ Press Release ] VIA [ UberGizmo ]

World’s Most Awesome Trash Can Catches Your Crap No Matter Where You Throw It

It’s annoying how some people don’t really both to pick up after themselves. It’s even more annoying if you actually happen to live with them. But something that could making your current living arrangements a bit more bearable is this robotic trash can hacked together by some fine Japanese folks. It might look pretty ordinary, but hook it up and you’ll soon figure out why this is the perfect trash can for lazy slobs (and for people with bad aim.)

The trash can is actually equipped with wheels that are controlled wirelessly through a Kinect-based program, which detects the path of thrown objects to direct the trash can to the object’s projected landing spot.

Check out the video below to see how it was put together. But if you’re just eager to see how it works, then skip on over to 2:24.

[ YouTube ] VIA [ TechnaBob ]

Whole Foods Developing Kinect Powered Shopping Cart

By David Ponce

Grocery shopping can be a nightmare, especially at Whole Foods where the variations on any one item can be dizzying. Gluten-free, low sodium, organic, free-range, peanut free, lactose free… that stuff’s complicated, man. Not to mention, you have to know where to find it all. That may be why Whole Foods is partnering with an Austin-based company called Chaotic Moon to develop a shopping cart that can help you out. The early prototype features integration with Microsoft Kinect. It follows you around the store and scans items as you drop them in, simultaneously checking them off your shopping list and alerting you in case you pick up the wrong version. It’ll even tell you where to find the right one. Check out is accomplished on the cart itself and you can then stroll right out, unless you need bags.

The version shown in the clip below is of course a very rough prototype. There’s no word on when or even if this will actually ever make it into stores.

VIA [ Engadget ]